Convalescence

 

‘Could we imagine this state of convalescence as a shared condition of experience, or rather a condition shared through art and thinking? If, living under the pressure to perform, we begin to see that a state of exhaustion is a horizon of collective experience, could we then understand this experience as the point of departure for the formation of a particular form of solidarity? A solidarity that would not lay the foundations for the assertion of a potent operative community, but which would, on the contrary, lead us to acknowledge that the one thing we share – exhaustion – makes us an inoperative community, an exhausted community, or a community of the exhausted. A community, however, that can still act, not because it is entitled to do so by the institutions of power, but by virtue of an unconditional, exuberant politics of dedication. In short, because, as a community of convalescents, we realise in an empty moment of full awareness, that we care.’

Jan Verwoert (2010) Tell me what you want, what you really, really want, pp. 70-1 through Nienke Terpsma

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